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Supergrass – I Should Coco (1995)

January 6, 2014

Happy New Year!
Welcome to ‘Starting Strong’ – looking at solid debut records throughout the month of January.

[Album 273/1001]220px-I_Should_Coco

Supergrass is the Stanley Tucci of music.

Anyone who has been subjected to one of my ultimate character actor appreciation rants can appreciate that this is not a slight.

The name Stanley Tucci may not ring a bell but trust me, he’s that guy from that movie you love!
– The flamboyant game show host in The Hunger Games movies
– Emma Stone’s hilarious dad in Easy A
– Meryl Streep’s loyal colleague in The Devil Wears Prada and devoted husband in Julie & Julia

Four roles that begin to scratch the surface of his film career, not necessarily overflowing with top-billed parts, but consistently excellent as a supporting player.  I’ve argued he makes every scene he’s in 20% better and I’ve yet to see a conclusive study that proves otherwise!

So, do you like Supergrass?

Again, name recognition might not happen immediately, but try playing this scene from Clueless.

Oh yeah, I love that song!

Plenty more where that came from: I Should Coco is an up-tempo set, with Caught By The Fuzz and Lenny being two of the twelve other good tunes.

I saw Supergrass open for Coldplay in Glasgow back in 2005, one of the best shows I’ve ever seen.  Coldplay had played the London Live 8 show earlier in the afternoon and had quickly flown in for the Glaswegian outdoor evening show.

The show was sensational: clips of Live 8 performances were played in between bands and you could tell Coldplay was fired up.

What took it from a great concert to a sensational show? The opener, Supergrass, playing an extended set that the crowd absolutely lapped up.  I wasn’t really familiar with them at the time but I definitely left that evening as a Supergrass fan.

I Should Coco was also part of the best year of musical output in recent memory, 1995.  Most will remember the headliners from that year: (What’s The Story?) Morning Glory, Mellon Collie and The Infinite Sadness, Jagged Little Pill.  Not to mention the cream of that year’s crop, The Bends and Different Class.  Unforgettable performances all around of course but like any great movie, it’s the supporting cast that makes the difference.

Much like Mr. Tucci, Supergrass thrived in that role.

From → 1990s

  1. I must be weird, cos I know who Supergrass and Tucci are (Big Night Out is a great film). I actually really, really, really love LIFE ON OTHER PLANETS but this is their “classic” album. I saw the boys open for the Foo Fighters a few years back, and they didn’t disappoint. Kinda sad they never got much bigger than their Clueless fame.

    Also, what they hell was in the water in 1995? And can we get some more???

    • Just checked the Life on other planets – I only know a handful of the songs, but the ones I know (Grace, Seen The Light) are stellar tunes.

      In it for the money is also on the 1001 list – I’ll likely check that one out soon, maybe as early as next month, I’m thinking of doing a ‘sophmore’ record February.

      I guess ’95 was one of those years that is an anomaly (1986 is another that stands out as an unusually bountiful year) – perhaps in 2014 we’re due for another year like it!

  2. I think I was aware of Stanley Tucci before “Big Night,” but that’s the movie that made me connect the name & face, and I’ve been a fan ever since. Just realized that was in ’96, only a year after “I Should Coco” was released, so your comparison of the two makes a lot of sense to me.

    A friend of mine from Capitol/EMI sent me a handful of CDs in ’95 that included “I Should Coco.” I almost didn’t give it a listen & was ready to trade it in with some other CDs at one of the local record shops, but I decided to give it a spin and was hooked within a couple of songs. I’ve been a huge Supergrass fan ever since. Much as I like Oasis, Blur, Pulp, Suede, etc., I consider Supergrass to be the best band of that era. They were certainly one of the most diverse. Every one of their albums is essential or close to it, and none of them sound like the one that preceded it.

    • Rich – I’m glad to commented, I was actually thinking of your ‘compilation or catalog’ series when listening to this one.

      Until this year, the only album I had was the compilation ‘Supergrass is 10′ – a fine compilation by any standard. This & In it for the money are on the 1001 but my favourite Supergrass tunes (Mary, Movin’) are from albums that aren’t included.

      Nice to have the catalog/compilation question answered before I even asked!

      • I could understand how Supergrass would be a Compilation artist for some fans, but their albums are too solid from start to finish to make a compilation truly definitive (although I own “Supergrass Is 10” and it’s a fantastic collection). I’m still a little sad that they split up. I liked Gaz Coombes’ debut solo album but it didn’t have the same impact on me as any of the Supergrass albums.

        Looking forward to hearing your thoughts on “In It For The Money” whenever you get to that part of the list.

    • It should be coming up soon-ish. Especially when I find I want to discover more by an artist, I play around with my monthly themes to try to fit in their other records. As In it for the money was album #2, I think some sort of sophmore follow-up February would be appropriate!

      What artist catalogue is up first for you this year?

      • Very nice. In It For The Money is a very different record, so I’ll be curious to read your impressions on it.

        Not that I need to keep things a secret regarding which artists I’m covering, but I’ll do it anyway (haha). Stay tuned for my next catalog very soon. I’m going to do a revamp of my blog with a new theme in the next day or two, and once I’m comfortable with it, my next series will begin. I was hoping to have that done last week, but I ended up with flu-like symptoms & I spent 4-5 days unable to accomplish anything.

      • No worries – being kept in suspense is fun too, looking forward to whatever/whenever it may be.

        Get well soon!

      • Thanks. I feel like I’m at about 80%, health-wise. This has been the kind of bug that kept me from enjoying music, so you can imagine how frustrating it’s been.

        As for my next series, let’s just say it shouldn’t take you all day & all of the night to figure out who it is.

      • If that’s who I hope it is, even though I sometimes feel I have too much on my mind, I’ll remember to check it out!

  3. Great band. Great sideburns.

    • To paraphrase Seinfeld, they’re real and they’re spectacular!

      The facial hair can enhance a band for sure – I was momentarily bitter when the journalist who reviewed Permission to Land for the 1001 book credited Frankie Poullain “On bass and moustache” – if only I’d thought of it first!

  4. Brilliant brilliant album by a brilliant brilliant band. Supergrass are unsung heroes of pop/rock of the last 20 years. Light years ahead of Oasis and possessing the sense of humour that Blur lost c. 1997 onwards.

    While I love their debut I think In it For The Money is the better album. I’m not sure they ever topped Richard III and Sun Hits the Sky. Looking forward to your assessment.

    Excellent post btw and great analogy with Stanley Tucci. I have a similar theory involving Fred Willard!

    • My thanks – and good call on Fred Willard!

      He was the highlight of Best in Show for me & definitely enhanced Anchorman, I’m sure the list goes on and on from there.

      I wonder if Supergrass would have been bigger stars if they had arrived 5 years earlier or later, any other time outside the peak of ‘britpop’

      • Supergrass WERE huge for a couple of years, especially in the UK. I think one of the reasons their profile didn’t stay as high as bands like Blur & Oasis is that they didn’t court controversy and for the most part avoided the tabloids. For my money, Supergrass is superior to all of their contemporaries, and their music still sounds fresh today.

      • That’s good to hear in other parts of the world they did get some of the recognition they deserved! In Canada I remember Pumpin on your stereo later getting some airtime but much like The Thrills, for some reason this record wasn’t on my radar.
        It was only when I was working in England in the early 2000s, a colleague was singing along to every word of “Grace” and I thought – who are these guys, this is great!

        Rich – the opening track (I’d like to know) sounded like it wouldn’t be out of place on a late 70s Elvis Costello record. Which I’d argue is one of the keys to sounding fresh – if it’s tough to pinpoint what era the music came from, that’s a good sign for being timeless.

  5. Just watched a movie last night (Gambit) that has Stanley Tucci in it.

    Just posted a review of a Supergrass album. If I find more, I’d buy it.

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